Sunday, November 21, 2010

Fusion update and HOME

As I write this our Danica Jean is sleeping alone in her little room in her own bed. This is huge. We bought a large side rail with mesh to put up to try to give us all some normalcy when it come to sleeping. We found out at Danica's appointments in Cincinnati on Friday she is healing very well. Above you can see the picture of her incision we took when they removed the brace long enough to change the pad. It is beautiful. I have never seen such a long and smooth cut before. The fusion is happening. Dr. Crawford showed us Friday's scans compared to the last trip. There is definitely some thickening of the band of muscle and formation of bone. We still have a long way to go. He will see us next on January 18th, more than eight weeks from now.

We headed on our trip in very good spirits. I don't know why I thought we were going to see something completely changed in the xrays. Danica is wanting to walk and take a bath and go to Target so badly. I guess I bought into her enthusiasm a little too much. She was even practicing before we left asking Dr. Crawford if she could begin walking. The actual discussion was very clear. Danica's center of gravity with the cumbersome brace makes it impossible for her to be mobile and safe. We have to wait this out and keep praying for healing. The appointment in January very well could put us further out into the early spring before we can even consider therapy much less a return to normal walking and running and playing. It just needs more time. The brace and the wheelchair are staying put for now.

There are moments I still think we are quite crazy to have moved home to try to do this on our own knowing the road ahead of us is longer than the one we just traveled. I am definitely suffering greater physical and emotional side effects from my shots. The distance to Delaney's school makes our support network dwindle and the back and forth to school much more challenging. Dan is now working in Green very near her school so it seems like we are are "stranded" over here so far from everyone. The holidays necessarily take people out and about for all kinds of gatherings and traditions, and we will sit here missing the tree lightings and the concerts and Santa. When I get emotional about what I think we are missing I don't need to hear anymore about how this is a season (yes, it's been a VERY long season) and to remember to count my blessings and to look on the bright side of things. I live on the sunny side most of the time. But somedays the loss feels so great. We have missed these traditions for years now, and it hurts.

This is why we had to come home. We need the little routines that assure us life is moving along. We need our own traditions. We need to be filled with unabandoned joy and sing and dance (Danica had me lift her and dance my heart out holding her just the other day. It's one of our favorite family time acitivities--to pump up the playlist and dance with one another.) We need to snuggle under blankets and read stories and watch old classics. We need to decorate sugar cookies and drink hot cocoa. We need to dream out loud about how we want our family to grow and who we will be. We desperately need to not just survive these years but thrive because life is too beautiful and God is too good not to.

Watching my girls faces light up as they saw their own rooms for the first time in so many weeks, eating dinner together--dinner I prepared, playing ants in the pants and doing art at our table . . . all these things took my breath away today. The love and care of my husband for me the past days is a huge measure of grace and has blessed me more than I can say. He undersands how much this means to me. He knows I need my space to really be okay and even though this may make things ultimately harder on him he has been so supportive. Home is exactly where we need to be right now.

Tony Woodlief writes in his book Somewhere More Holy, " . . . This is the story of how we reclaim the things that are lost. It's also a story about how a home can be become sacred, and how in the process it can sanctify us as well. I can tell you these things because I have been in dark places--which is the only way any of us learns to love the light. . . Home is more than a place where we eat and sleep; it is where we learn grace, where we glimpse heaven. It is where we find or lose God, or perhaps where He finds us if we will only be still long enough to listen for Him."

Our house is perfectly still tonight, and we are tucked in with fresh lessons of grace and glimpses of heaven as we settle in our own sheet thread count, say our prayers and LISTEN. We are home. (Tomorrow I will post pictures from our fun homecoming day.)


  1. Beautiful post, my friend. I am so glad you are home with all the things you need to be okay and be still and listen. I am praying for stamina and for glimpses of grace and joy every day for you all. And I am hoping that part of your holiday celebrating will include a hug from me in person! :) I love you so.

  2. Her incision is beautiful!! You guys are in my prayers as always!!! If god wants for you to be home he will provide!! Love to you all!!!!

  3. Welcome home! Savor every moment, even the most difficult ones, as you experience His continuing grace in your lives.

  4. Hi Monica,
    I am glad to hear that Danica's fusion is looking good, and that you are able to be back home. It is hard to be away from you home so long, even when you are with loving and supportive family. Our church had a thanksgiving celebration tonight, and celebrated our 25th anniversary. We had a meal, then a service of praise, testimonies, and thanksgiving. And we got to hear some people's "stories". Some, that had been in a very dark place...marriages that were about to disintegrate years back, but are rock solid now, people who went thru dark times, but came through them because of the grace of God, etc. And there was also a story with a couple who are going through a very hard trial, with chronic pain, financial problems, many things, yet were so thankful for the sacrificial gift of God's Son,redeeming us from our sin, and the sure gift of salvation. Life was still hard, and she looked worn and tired. She looked like she needed rest. My heart went out to her. But her story isn't over. I could relate to that, as I am sure you can. I hate what your family is having to go through, and I hate what my family and Greg are going through also. But I do know, that God seems to work most in my life, when I am the most broken, with the difficult things in life. But our stories are not over...not by a long shot. And I believe in happy endings! Still praying for you guys!

  5. Your tradition plans sound so much fun- enjoy!!
    I also love to scoop Caitlyn up in my arms and dance- she loves the movemebt abd the fun side of mumma that is all too often hidden.
    I am so glad you are home, sleep well tonight xo

  6. Dear friend! I hear you! It is not a season, it is a new normal. We have come to this with Brooke. Although she can walk, some days are such a struggle. I have to decide after she wakes up, what the plans for the day will be. No more flying by the seat of our pants. Routines and calm are so important now. Just yesterday at church, she started feeling poorly. Her teacher told me and I went and got the stroller. i spent the rest of the morning working and pushing he rin the stroller. Not sure what we will do when the stroller is to small? But when I look at that scar, I thank God she is doing as well as she is. I am praying for you and Danica. I know that God has a beautiful plan! Hang in there with that Lupron too. That is some powerful stuff! I remember!
    Hugs! Melinda

  7. God is not a God of Chaos... He is a God of order! I am so happy that God has given that back to you. How much more Content and Thankful we are when we are given back what is "Ours"
    Praying for you all!!
    Love you!